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10 Tips for Better Black Friday Marketing

 In Digital Marketing, Holiday

Black Friday is a huge boon for retailers, particularly if the majority of your business is brick-and-mortar. In part one of our holiday capsule series, we’ll walk you through the best steps to ensure you’re marketing to your customers in the way they want to be marketed to, and hopefully you’ll pick up a trick or two along the way to make this Black Friday marketing campaign your most successful yet..

#1 Plan Ahead
20% of Black Friday shoppers actually start shopping in September. Make sure you have a game plan in place to meet them where they are, bright and early. The last thing you want is for your specials or events to find your customers after they’re already over! Think out your strategy now, and ensure you have ample time to communicate to your core customers before the day actually arrives.

Steal it: AdRoll’s Christmas in July Blast

Black Friday marketing

#2 Consider Mobile
Did you know that 68% of adults in the US now own smartphones? That’s a huge chunk of your customer base that has the capability for mobile browsing and shopping. And roughly 25% of all purchases will be made on mobile by next year. It is definitely worth it to consider expanding into mobile Black Friday marketing if you haven’t already. These numbers will only continue to grow, so don’t be left behind!

Steal it: Sephora App-Only Black Friday Preview

#3 Mind Your Analytics
What I mean here is really just to learn from your numbers. The more responsive you are to your data, the better your campaign will do. Whether those numbers are as simple as last year’s Black Friday sales and traffic data, or as complex as a full Google Analytics suite, make sure to keep your data top of mind not only for Black Friday but throughout the holiday season. Track this year’s numbers, too! Next year’s Black Friday marketing campaign will thank you.

Steal it: UnderArmour’s Real-Time Data and Display Ads

#4 Don’t Forget About Social Media
There are a few uses for your social media accounts for Black Friday marketing: customer engagement, advertising deals, and posting information. Your customers need to know when you’ll be open (since many stores have special hours for the holiday), so be sure to tweet that out several times ahead of the day, and around 10am the day of. Also, update your Facebook hours and post about your open and close times. Deals, of course, are the main factor driving sales the week of Black Friday, so capitalize on that by pinning your best deals to the top of your Twitter profile. Finally, lots of buying = lots of customer support. Make sure your customers can reach you on social media and answer them promptly and courteously in the days before and immediately after Black Friday.

Steal it: Kohl’s Black Friday Twitter Trivia
Black Friday marketing

#5 Use a Countdown
Clocks usually inspire a sense of urgency. Judicious use of countdowns across multiple platforms including email, social, and website can certainly give your customers a sense of FOMO (fear of missing out) on all of your deals and promotions. If you have specific deals going throughout the day, try counting down to each of them individually as well.

Steal it: AutoZone flash sale countdown

#6 Incorporate Guerilla Marketing
Guerilla marketing has been in the spotlight quite a bit recently. There’s been a renewed interest in physical, experiential marketing as a counterpoint to the sometimes impersonal tone of the digital revolution. It’s a clever way to arrest attention and create buzz. Some of the best examples of this capitalize on humour or shock value to advertise, inform, or entertain. Use this to drive your brand awareness and potentially advertise any promotions or events you’re using for your Black Friday marketing.

Steal it: Dyson Black Friday Warm-Up Tent

#7 Reward Loyalty
Remember the 80/20 rule? 80% of your business comes from 20% of your customers, and those customers should be thanked for their loyalty and dedication. Consider doing a special preview event or exclusive after-hours for your best shoppers. Or, perhaps extend Black Friday deals to them early. Keeping these customers engaged and returning will benefit you both in continued sales but also their testimony about your business. Happy customers tell others, and others trust their word of mouth!

Steal it: Nordstrom VIP Shopping Parties

black friday marketing

#8 Make It a Special Event
While it may be hard to compete with some of the deals of the major discounters, you can definitely have something they don’t: ambiance. Creating an event around Black Friday shopping, serving drinks and hors d’oeuvres or having live music is a great way to pull in customers who are disillusioned with the chaos of the big box stores. While your deals may not be bargain basement, your elevated atmosphere will attract the kind of long-term customers you need to build and grow your business.

Steal it: Christmas On King Street Black Tie Optional Event

#9 Include the Millennials
Millennials are spending nearly $200 billion a year as a cohort, and who wouldn’t want to tap into that kind of market? Millennials love authenticity and convenience, so consider ideas like mobile-only deals, online order and in-store pick up, or heritage and “throw back” products. Tap into their love of nostalgia by highlighting your brand story and history, and capitalize on their need for digital by giving them exclusive deals they can access from anywhere.

Steal it: Old Navy’s Cheermageddon

#10 Remember, It’s Not All About Price
Keep in mind that while Black Friday may be a day for deals, consumers are still searching for value over price. By providing value-added services such as complimentary wrapping, live music, food, private shopping events, and mobile optimization, you are ensuring your ability to compete with even the mostly steeply discounted products, and you are building brand awareness and customer loyalty along the way.

Steal it: Portland’s Little Boxes Events

Black Friday marketing

However you choose to participate in Black Friday marketing, keep these tips in mind to maximize your marketing ROI, increase brand engagement, and encourage loyalty from your customers. Do you have any other tips to share for a successful Black Friday? Let us know in the comments!